Friday, August 29, 2008

A Leash?

I love her, really I do. I have no idea how to reach her and at 6 yrs old, I am wondering seriously if I ever will. She is bright, beautiful, entertaining, helpful, and inquisitive. She, however, is also manipulative, deceitful, annoying, charming, and unattached. I worry about her complete lack of self esteem and obsession of boys. I am having a very difficult time having Pizazz through my grinding teeth and since her AT insisted we hold off thumping her between the eyes for every infraction, I am not sure how to turn things around. I consider him a good therapist and even he said today that he will have to consult with other AT's for some more ideas. Nothing works. He is out of tricks.

She is not outright vicious, she just has to have complete control over every event. I had no idea there were so many ways to take the damn trash out. You can leave it untied, rip it, dump it out, behind the trash can, on front of the trash can, on top of the can, down at the mailbox, on the porch, etc... You get the idea, it is NEVER what I ask, she has to change it up. If I turn my head in the same room she MUST do something wrong. It is not like most of the time she is up to something. She is constantly aware of my every intention to turn my back on her so she can break, use, steal, or hide something she is not supposed to have. She is perfect when I am in the room, plays nicely through her constant stream of chatter about the wind, school, her boo boos, and the kids. I am not concerned she will attack anyone, she isn't violent in any way. She is dangerous in her recklessness. She swings from the ceiling fans, her bunk bed, breaks glass and hides it, opens windows and sits in the sill, and so many other things I never imagined a child could think of. She must be supervised at all times. She is so sneaky and quick to act that if I turn my head, she is gone. With all the needs of the kids after school she uses this to her advantage . Sometimes it takes me a few minutes to notice she has moved and then I find her hiding to watch TV or playing outside on the trampoline. This kid is slick and smart, not a good combination.

My DH mentioned last night that a child leash might work. We had used one a few times on Emma as a toddler to keep her from running off. She liked it and thought it was a game. I have heard of people trying this with unattached kids and threw it out for the AT. He thought it was a great idea. It would give me more opportunities to praise her if we eliminated the disappearing act she does. I am gonna see what I can find to use. I don't want it to be an animal leash b/c that seems a bit degrading but maybe a scarf or cotton rope/string tied around each of our wrists. He set it up in therapy when we used the puppets to be a sad girl named Mava and her parents. We were both thinking she might enjoy the time attached to me too much since her goal is to keep my attention on her and instead of her siblings and we were hoping it would allow me more time with them without being focused on where she is.

Anyone tried something similar? If so, how did it work out?

Ella was also seen by the AT today. She spent the entire time acting pitiful and telling us pitiful stories. We gave her a goal of playing with someone at least 3 times this week at Recess. She claims to have no friends to play with and that she sits by herself all the time. I let her teacher know of her goal and discovered I had been duped. She plays every day with many of the girls. It was all another lie to get pity. Why would you want pity? I have said it before, she will be the victim in every situation and make up the the part if there isn't one. I stepped into the lunchroom to see her and she had conned the staff in the lunchroom that she was hungry b/c she hadn't eaten. The kid ate right before stepping on the school grounds and there she sat with a full lunch plate. She, too, is manipulative and charming. I can't wait for my kids to use their energy for the good of mankind instead of orchestrating everyone around them in silly games.

6 comments:

Momof3 said...

We have the harnesses that look like an animal back pack.

Here is a link to a similar one



http://www.amazon.com/Eddie-Bauer-2%252din%252d1-Harness-Monkey/dp/B0011UNHQ2/ref=pd_bbs_sr_1?ie=UTF8&s=baby-products&qid=1220031027&sr=8-1

Lisa said...

"I stepped into the lunchroom to see her and she had conned the staff in the lunchroom that she was hungry b/c she hadn't eaten. The kid ate right before stepping on the school grounds and there she sat with a full lunch plate."

How many times this has happened??? I can't even count anymore. Plus J is a "must be in my line of sight" kid too. It is tiring. Never anything dangerous to herself though (just Puddin) just annoying stuff.

I think the leash idea is absolutely wonderful and a stroke of genius. Could you put a big sun hat on her head? Just a thought since you mentioned being worried that she might get too much attention. That way she wouldn't always see your expressions and if she wants to see you she has to make the effort to look up. I don't know...just a thought...

Wendi said...

Hey- just popped in for the first time in a couple of weeks and caught this post. We took placement of a 3 and 6 year old- hoping to foster to adopt. We should know in October :-)

Anyway- I had a toddler here once and bought him a little 'backpack' type of thing that has an animal shape (this one was a monkey, but they have a dog). It is quite cute, and has the leash (it is the critters tail) attached. It is pretty strong as this toddler would do all he could to get away from me. So if she isn't a very big around girl, I bet it would work. And for 9.99 it is worth a shot. I got mine at Target.

Best of luck!

AnnMarie said...

I go with one of the toddler ones. The problem, however, is that whatever you use she'll probably be able to take off. Not sure how you'd deal with that....

Mongoose said...

The leash sounds like a great idea, but it depends how you do it. My dog totally uses the leash to manipulate me. It may not be the same but actually my dog has LOTS of behaviours similar to attachment-disordered kids. I've never seen a dog like that before. So maybe it is the same in some ways.

Don't you ever get just plain bored with these things? I got totally bored of Wayne's tantrums after two years and that actually settled him down quite a bit, when I stopped responding to his attention-seeking behaviour by paying attention to him. Then he started doing the things I did pay attention to, such as leaving a detailed note saying where he was, when he'd be back and how to reach him, and then actually being there and being home when he said he would.

It works on my Girl Guides, too, if I ignore the attention-seeking behaviours and only respond to positive behaviour, I get less attention-seeking and more positive behaviour.

Anonymous said...

hi, I've never read your blog before, and I don't know if you have ever visited mothering.com, but I have read on the foster/adopt forum (we are just starting out on this journay they call foster parenting, thus I read every blog I can find that may be even slightly related), about people putting their slightly older kids (4-7 y.o.) in a sling/hiking backpack or even the toddler leashes so that they are ALWAYS within arms reach...

Sorry to invade your privacy!
Thank you for letting me have a glimps into your life!